Things That Should Disappear In 2012

Recently my sister posted this video to my Facebook page—and although my initial reaction was to laugh—after watching it a few times (and yes, I probably watched it about 4 times), all I could think was, “Is THIS really what we consider entertainment?”

Now I’m assuming that most people can see EXACTLY what is wrong with this picture. But for the sake of this post—I’ll give you the break down.

For starters: I think the entire concept of “Toddlers and Tiaras” is horrific. Obviously, apologies if any of the readers are huge supporters of the whole pageant thing, but there has to be alternative ways to teach our youth about the wonderful world of “competition” (think: SPORTS). The whole idea of dressing a little girl up/subjecting them to wearing makeup and skimpy clothes to “build character” just seems backwards to me.

But anyways, I digress—lets talk about Alana—the star of the video above.

She is as CUTE as a button. The first time I watched the video, I literally was brought to tears laughing. But once I actually thought about it, what 6-year-old child says, “A dollar makes me holler honey boo-boo“?! [1:25 in the video]

Oh, that’s right—one that has spent her entire childhood sipping on “special juice” and being brainwashed to think that makeup and shiny outfits equals beauty (and in this case, also equals money and success).

So where am I going with this rant?  Well, basically I think our country has some weird obsession with over-sexualizing our youth.

Think about it, when it comes to the entertainment/advertising industry, our culture has baby fever. As in, people go crazy for anything that involves cute, little children. Take the E-Trade commercials for example: little babies taking about grown-up things…People love these commercials. So the entertainment industry takes America’s obsession with little kids and runs with it—creating shows such as “Toddlers and Tiaras”.

I was actually planning on writing about this same topic earlier this summer when the US caught wind of images from the French line, Jours Apres-Lunes—which is a lingerie line for little girls (or the way they like to phrase it: ‘loungerie’ for children and teenagers).

Many news programs reported on the French line as well as America’s outrage to the blatant over-sexualization of these young children.

The issue? Well it’s not so much the concept of the line that had parents in a frenzy (because clearly it’s not unheard of for younger girls wanting to wear “cute” undergarments), but more the way in which these young girls were posed and positioned.

But what I find somewhat ironic is, we get outraged by these images—yet the ratings for “Toddlers and Tiaras” are still sky high. It seems like America has a bit of the-pot-calling-the-kettle-black syndrome, yes?

So in regards to the title of my post, something I wish would disappear in 2012: “Toddlers and Tiaras” (well, at least that’s the start of my wish list). Let the children of America have their youth back. No make-up, no mid-drfits, no worrying if they’re pretty enough to win a trophy, no concerns about body image—just plain and simple ‘kid problems’ (i.e. —when is my nap time? —where has my teddy bear gone? —and what’s the deal with Santa?).

So what do you think MSP’ers? Am I just being dramatic, or are we on the same wave length here?

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About Madeline Haller

Madeline Haller

Madeline Haller is an Assistant Editor for MensHealth.com. Haller received her bachelor's degree in journalism from Indiana University, with a second concentration in gender studies. When she's not writing for MSP/MH, you can find her running, enjoying a cup of coffee, or searching for the perfect shade of red lipstick.

  • anonymoose

    This Jours Apres-Lunes is playing with fire.  I remember a news report one morning about these Non Nude preteen sites where the photographer/pornographer has the girls dress in cute outfits, lingerie, bikinis, etc.  Many people were jailed and the judge deemed it as being child pron with the definition that this includes any photo taken of a child that is meant to excite an adult.

    In addition, I always think it suspicious that when some male photographer creates an artistic nudity book that features children, 99.5% of the photos are of girl children, with the occaisional token boy child just to try to make it look legit.  Only an idiot wouldn’t be able to see what the photographer is trying to get away with.  These books show up in Barnes and Noble and what used to be Borders in the photography section.